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Power BI May 2022 Feature Summary

Welcome to the May 2022 update. We are thrilled to announce the general availability of Canvas zoom and Data point rectangle select features, Field parameters and Error bars for columns and line combination charts new preview features, new Format pane and managing composite models preview feature updates. There is more to explore, please continue to read on.

Desktop Download button

Reporting

Data connectivity and preparation

Service

Mobile

Developers

Visualizations

Other

Check out the video below for this month’s summary:

New Format Pane updates 

General availability has moved to June! We’re still hard at work addressing your feedback so we pushed GA out another month to continue to make improvements. Please continue to submit your feedback directly in the comments of this blog post or add to the discussion via our “share feedback” link next to the preview switch so we can continue capture any issues you encounter before GA.

New! – user preference setting to expand all sub-categories by default

To address the overwhelming feedback we’ve been hearing about the new sub-categories adding extra clicks, we have now added a user preference setting to allow all sub-categories to remain expanded when you open a card. This should feel familiar to the old format pane behavior.

Current default (setting off)If preferred, user can turn setting on
Only first sub-category is expanded by default to allow for quick scanning of contents

All sub-categories are expanded to reduce extra clicks

Improvements added this month include:

  • Analytics pane support re-added for custom visuals
  • “No fill” for Title > background, Tooltips > background, and Header icons > Help tooltip > background color pickers have been re-added
  • For easier searching, we added “color” back to all color swatches
  • Conditional formatting card re-added for Decomp Tree visual
  • Matrix and Table now match on “conditional formatting” search term for “cell elements” card

To help with adjusting to our new naming conventions, we’ve added an alias for the renamed “conditional formatting” card now called “cell elements” when using search.

Canvas Zoom 

Long anticipated, we have now added the ability to zoom on the canvas! For report readers, this is especially important for improving readability. For report creators, this helps magnify the canvas to make pixel perfect tweaks. Users can drag the slider to set the zoom level or click on the zoom % to launch the zoom level dialog and type in a custom input. Use the new quick “fit to page” button to get back to the default view.
Note: the zoom level is not saved with the report.

Canvas zoom has shipped in Desktop, Service read mode, and Service edit mode.

Field parameters 

We’re excited to announce a new preview feature called Field parameters that will allow users to dynamically change the measures or dimensions being analyzed within a report. This feature can help your end-users explore and customize the analysis of the report by selecting the different measures or dimensions they are interested in.

Creating a field parameter

To get started you will need to first enable the preview feature called Field parameters:

Then, to create a new field parameter, you will need to navigate to Modeling > New parameter > Fields:

To build the parameter, you will need to provide a name for the parameter and select the fields you want to use. In this example for my parameter, I’ve selected different dimensions:

In this dialog you can drag and drop to change the ordering of the fields or double click on any of the selected fields to change the display name.

You can also mix and match different measures and dimensions within the same parameter. For example, this feature can be used to create a dynamic table, where the columns can be either measures or dimensions.

Using a field parameter to control visual properties

Once you’ve created a field parameter, you can now use the parameter to control the measures or dimensions used in a visual.

You can use the parameter in the field drop zones for a visual. Note that certain visual properties have restrictions on the number of fields that can be used or the types of fields that can be used.

From within the context menu, you can also change if the field parameter is showing the values of the selected field(s) or the display names of the selected field(s) for all non-slicer visuals:Graphical user interface, text, application Description automatically generated

Editing a field parameter

Finally, if you need to edit any existing field parameters, you will need to modify the DAX directly.
For example, if you want to add a new field to an existing parameter you can click Shift + Enter to start a new entry:

You’ll need to add a comma between each entry, and you will need to match the following format:

(“<display name of choice>”, NAMEOF(‘<table name>’[<field name>]), <ordinal number used for sorting>)

Limitations

  • AI visuals and Q&A is not supported with the feature
  • There is no way for end users to select “none” or no fields option. This is because selecting no fields in the slicer or filter card is the same as selecting all fields.
  • You cannot use implicit measures for now, meaning if you need an aggregated column as one of your fields, then you would need to create an explicit DAX measure for it.
    • Example of implicit measure: ∑ Sales
    • Example of explicit measure: Measure = SUM(‘Table’[Sales])

Learn more.

Managing composite models on Power BI datasets

The ability to create a composite model leveraging one or more Power BI datasets or Azure Analysis Services models has been in preview since December 2020. Just last month we announced that we are changing the required permissions to view reports created using this feature.

This month, we have another exciting announcement: tenant admins can now enable or disable DirectQuery connections to Power BI datasets in the admin portal. While this is enabled by default, disabling it will effectively stop users from publishing new composite models on Power BI datasets to the Service. As common with these settings, you can also specify whether you want the setting to apply to specific security groups or to the whole organization.

This setting is enabled by default, and if disabled, any reports that leverage a composite model on a Power BI dataset which were already published to the Service will continue to work.

If the setting is disabled, Power BI Desktop will show the following when you create a DirectQuery connection to the Power BI dataset by selecting Make changes to this model:

This way you can still explore the dataset in your local Power BI Desktop environment and create the composite model. However, you will not be able to publish the report to the Service. When you publish the report and model you will see the following error message and publication will be blocked:

Note that live connections to Power BI datasets are not influenced by the switch, nor are live or DirectQuery connections to Azure Analysis Services. These will continue to work regardless of if the switch has been turned off. Also, any published reports that leverage a composite model on a Power BI dataset will continue to work even if the switch has been turned off after they were published.

Read more in our documentation.

Data point rectangle select  

We’re excited to announce that data point rectangle select is now generally available! With this feature, you can now multi-select data points by clicking and dragging over a supported visual. Here’s a refresher on how it works:

When editing a report, you can create a selection rectangle by holding down CTRL and clicking and dragging within a visual. Letting go of the mouse will select all points overlapping the selection rectangle. Your previous selections will be preserved, and already-selected data points will be unselected — it will be as though you held down the Ctrl key and individually clicked every single point that overlaps the selection rectangle. You can also click and drag while holding down the Shift key instead. This will only add data points to your selection without deselecting any points. As always, you can clear your current selection by clicking an empty space on the plot area (without holding down any key). Additionally, when viewing a report, you can create a selection rectangle by clicking and dragging across a visual, even when you have no other keys held down.

This month, we’ve also introduced keyboard controls to help you access data point rectangle select even without a mouse. Pressing the S key while focused on the plot area or a data point will enter rectangle select mode, displaying a crosshair on the visual. You can move the crosshair using the arrow keys, and speed up that movement by holding down the Shift key.

Then, when you’re ready to start drawing the rectangle from your cursor’s position, hold down the Space key and use the same crosshair movement controls to create the selection rectangle. Selection is completed once you let go of the Space key.

You can also now clear selections by pressing Ctrl+Shift+C.

Keep in mind that data point rectangle select is available for line, area, scatter, treemap, and map visuals, and that there is a 3500 data point limit for the number which you can select at once.

Error bars for column and line combination charts

Continuing our work on error bars, this month we’ve brought error bars to combo charts as well! After enabling the preview feature, you can create error bars using the same method as before: drag upper and lower bound fields into the field wells in the error bars card of the Analytics Pane. You’ll find the same formatting options for the line and column portions of the visual as their respective chart types.

ArcGIS for Power BI visual updates

The ArcGIS for Power BI visual releases with Power BI desktop and is maintained by Esri in collaboration with Microsoft. The visual is updated regularly to provide new features, improved speed and usability, and bug fixes. The 2022.2 update is a quality release, including performance improvements and bug fixes for a variety of features, including reference layers, infographics, geo-search and pins, sign-in, and tooltips. For more details on all the improvements, check out the Esri community post here!

FactSet RMS (New Connector)

We are excited to release the FactSet RMS connector! Here are notes from the FactSet team.

The FactSet Power BI Data Connector leverages the power of FactSet’s IRN API to integrate research data into Power BI. This allows users the flexibility and control to customize how they consume FactSet’s IRN using Power BI’s data visualizations. Other data sources can also be integrated to further enhance the Power BI experience.

Funnel (New Connector)

We are excited to also release the Funnel connector! Here are notes from the Funnel team.

Funnel makes it easy to report on your marketing performance. Collect data from all platforms across the customer journey: advertising, analytics, social and CRM. Transform and clean your data with recommended and customizable rules. Then send your data to Power BI, helping your team visualize and uncover new insights. Our mission is to help marketers become more data-driven. With this new integration we will help a new group of marketers and analysts take full control of their reporting stack, freeing them to iterate while reducing cost and complexity for technical teams.

Azure Databricks (Connector Update)

The Azure Databricks connector has been updated. Here are notes from the Azure Databricks team:

This connector update ensures system proxy settings are now applied to Databricks connections.

Denodo (Connector Update)

The Denodo connector has been updated. Here are notes from the Denodo team:

The new version adds:
– Possibility to use Value.NativeQuery at the Power Query Editor in order to manually set a native SQL query to be used.
– Possibility to use a connection string instead of a DSN at configuration time.
– Compatibility with .pbids files.

Google Sheets (Connector Update)

The Google Sheets connector is now generally available and no longer in “Beta”.

Autodesk Construction Cloud (Connector Update)

The Autodesk Construction Cloud connector has been updated. Here are notes from the Autodesk team:

This update includes the IsRetry option on Web.Contents as well as some response handling for 500 status codes.

Managing Power BI subscriptions got easier

We’re excited to announce improvements to the subscription management experience that provides workspace Admins with new oversight and management capabilities over all subscriptions created against artifacts in a given workspace. If assigned the Admin role in a workspace, you can now view all subscriptions that have been created for Power BI reports, dashboards or paginated reports in that workspace, regardless of owner. Information on the subscription name, owner, report or dashboard name, and content type is provided.

In addition to viewing all subscriptions associated with a workspace, as a workspace Admin, you can now also make edits or take over subscriptions that are not your own.

If you are not a workspace Admin, but instead a workspace Member, Contributor, or Viewer, you will still have access to this updated subscription management page but will only be able to see your own subscriptions. Whether you are a workspace Admin or not, you can search through subscriptions by keyword as well as sort any of the columns alphabetically.

You can learn more by reading the blog post or the documentation.

Dataset hub improvements

We’ve updated the dataset details page to make it even easier for you to gain insights on top of your data.

Once you discover a dataset in the datasets hub, click on the dataset to open the dataset details page. From within the dataset details page, you can start exploring the data by using the new capabilities we have added, as described below.

Auto-create a report on top of an existing dataset
You can now quickly create a report starting from an existing dataset. When you do that, Power BI autogenerates a summarized view of your data. These autogenerated visuals propel you from raw data to insights faster than ever. Changing the data you see in the report is easy, too. Use the Your data pane to add or remove fields from the report. Select and unselect fields to update what you want to measure and analyze. Power BI automatically plots meaningful charts based on the fields you select.

Note: this functionality is currently available only for datasets with a single table.
Create an exportable formatted data table
The new authoring experience for exportable formatted data tables is now available via the dataset hub.

Read more here.

Deprecation of a Featured Dashboard as your default landing page

The capability to add a featured dashboard as your homepage on the Power BI service is being deprecated April 29th – June 1st depending on your geographic location.

How this will affect you

You will no longer be able to add a featured dashboard as your homepage on the Power BI service. Previously featured dashboards will still be visible on your Power BI Homepage. But, pinned dashboards cannot be added or edited. You will still have the option to remove the featured dashboard.

What you need to do to prepare

As an alternative, to ensure you can find your dashboards in the future, consider favoriting your pinned dashboards through Power BI.

Deprecation of the Dashboard Performance Inspector

The capability to use your Power BI dashboard’s Performance Inspector in the Power BI service is being deprecated April 29th – June 1st depending on your geographic location.

How this will affect you

You will no longer be able to use the Performance Inspector in the Power BI Service. This means the support for viewing what areas are performing well and what areas need improvement for better performance in your Power BI dashboards will be discontinued.

What you need to do to prepare

The Performance Inspector within the Power BI Service has no alternate workaround. Please make sure to plan accordingly before this feature’s deprecation date.

Goal updates now available in the activity feed

The Power BI mobile app activity feed helps you stay up to date with all the activity and updates for your content.

Starting with this release, your activity feed will also include changes and updates to goals. Now you’ll be able to more quickly understand and react to the status and progress of your goals. Not only can you get right to the goal’s details pane inside the scorecard by tapping on the goal in the activity feed, you can also update your goals directly from the activity feed itself via the Quick check-in button!

Windows app – new minimum OS requirement

In preparation for WebView2, the minimum Windows OS version required by the Power BI Windows app has changed to Windows 10 version 16299. App upgrades for Windows devices running on earlier OS versions will not be available.

File downloads API

The new File downloads API enables custom visuals to export data from the visual into files. Downloads require user consent and a global admin switch to be enabled. The new API is available with the 4.5 API release. Read more about this API in this article.

Expand collapse new attributes

We’re continuously improving our APIs, and with the new 4.2 API we added two additional attributes to the expand/collapse API for the Matrix dataview:

"supportsMerge": {
"type": "boolean",
"description": "Indicates that the expansion state should be updated, instead of reset, when the query projections change."
},
"restoreProjectionsOrderFromBookmark": {
"type": "boolean",
"description": "Indicates that the bookmarked expansion state should be restored even if the query projections order no longer matches the expansion state levels."
}

Read more in this article

New visuals in AppSource

The following are new visuals this update:

Editor’s pick of the quarter

Dumbbell Bar Chart by Nova Silva

Data visualisations play a fundamental role in answering an important data question:”How does result A compare to result B?”. Typical examples of these questions are:

How does the sales of this month compare to the sales of last month?

What is the difference between the number of documents processed this year compared to 2021?

How does the number of planned-visitors compare to the number of unplanned-visitors at our locations?

Key in answering these kind of questions is clearly visualising the difference between the two results. This is the strength of the Dumbbell Bar Chart: showing both values and the difference between them.

In the latest version you’ll find the features you asked for: data labels and conditional formatting. All available in the familiar standard Power BI interface. No need to learn any new interface to configure these features.

Don’t hesitate and try the Dumbbell Bar Chart now on your own data by downloading it from the AppSource. All features are available for free to evaluate this visual within Power BI Desktop.

Questions or remarks? Visit us at: https://visuals.novasilva.com.

Drill Down Map PRO by ZoomCharts

Drill Down Map PRO by ZoomCharts is a custom map visual for Power BI. Explore location-based data in an intuitive and easy way in which each click is used for maximum efficiency, while enjoying on-chart interactions.

Features include:

  • Custom shape support – provide your own custom shapes through KML and GeoJSON files.
  • Lasso tool – draw your own shapes as filters.
  • Node clustering capabilities – clusters can be formatted as donut or pie charts for category display.
  • Various map layers let you choose from 4 options – Azure maps, Custom (OpenStreetMaps, Google, CartoDB etc.), Image (e.g., floor plans), None (visualize shapes without background).
  • Aura, image, and custom label support.

Popular use cases:

  • Production – monitoring production and equipment data by location.
  • Sales and marketing – mapping sales results by region or shop location.
  • Public sector – visualizing environmental and sociodemographic data.

Try Drill Down Map PRO now by downloading the visual from AppSource.

Learn More about Drill Down Map PRO by ZoomCharts.

ZoomCharts Drill Down PRO Visuals are known for their interactive drilldowns, smooth animations, rich customization options. All Drill Down PRO Visuals support: touch input devices, interactions, custom and native tooltips, filtering, bookmarks, and context menu.

Charticulator  

With the latest version of Charticulator, the visual is now generally available. We’ve also made a variety of updates and bug fixes with the visual:

  • Support Y-axis label wrapping based on chart margins Cartesian coordinate system
  • Fixed an issue with text outline and background properties
  • Fixed an issue with color picker
  • Fixed an issue with the icons in the dropdown menu
  • Fixed an issue with image opening
  • Added the begin and end arrow type for the link line
  • Added orientation and rounded base properties for the Triangle mark
  • Added search in attributes panel
  • Fixed an issue with categorical tick data and tick format when rebind data to axis
  • Removed the first and last ticks when the baseline is not visible on the axis
  • Fixed an issue with color picker incorrect display in Plot Segment
  • Fixed an issue with the nested chart when add new field
  • Fixed an issue with the axis properties in nested chert

Power BI Desktop infrastructure update (WebView2)

Thanks for your patience while we switch to WebView2 as part of the infrastructure update. Before releasing this switch, we want to be sure we have solved as many issues as possible. Therefore, we have fixed several bugs but need more help! Starting with this release, if we detect there is an issue with WebView2 Power BI Desktop will show you the following message:

If you see this message, please do not disregard it, but instead help us fix any outstanding issues by clicking on the Get in touch button or by responding to the community forum post. Thanks in advance!

That is all for this month! Please continue sending us your feedback and do not forget to vote for other features that you would like to see in Power BI! We hope that you enjoy the update! If you installed Power BI Desktop from the Microsoft Store, please leave us a review.

Also, don’t forget to vote on your favorite feature this month over on our community website. 

As always, keep voting on Ideas to help us determine what to build next.

We are looking forward to hearing from you!

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